Kierkegaard’s Construction of the Human Self
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The purpose of this article is to analyze Kierkegaard’s philosophical views concerning the problem of the nature of the human self. With the help of a close examination of Kierkegaard’s texts The Concept of Anxiety and The Sickness unto Death, we argue that Kierkegaard “constructs” the human self in a specific way. This way reveals, through the examination by Kierkegaard of “anxiety” and “despair,” three main characteristics of the human self: a)~the self is a dynamic process, always “becoming” in time through free will and freedom of choice, b)~the human self is always a historical self, so that history is then a direct product of “becoming a self,” and c)~the human self, in order to be “whole,” must freely ground itself in a transcendental being (God).
- Evans, C. Stephen. Kierkegaard on Faith and the Self. Waco, TX: Baylor University Press, 2006.
- Kierkegaard, Søren. The Concept of Anxiety. Translated by Reidar Thomte and Albert B. Anderson. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1980.
- Kierkegaard, Søren. The Sickness unto Death. Translated by Howard V. Hong and Edna H. Hong. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1980.
- Lubcke, Poul. “Freedom and Morality.” In Kierkegaard and Freedom, edited by James Giles, 93–105. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2000.
- Mooney, F. Edward. Selves in Discord and Resolve. New York; London: Routledge, 1996.
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